10 Cover Letter Tips: Making Yourself Irresistible
Most employers could go their whole lives without reading another resume if it was up to them, so that’s when truly helpful cover letter tips come in handy. If they are not in a hurry to hire, the last thing they want to do with their time is pick through anonymous resumes. A cover letter gives you a quick chance to tell them why they should take a closer look at you.
Here are 10 cover letter tips to keep your resume from ending up in the trash can.
Before reading these cover letter tips, make sure you open that mind of yours and take note.
1. If you’ve got connections, use them.
Name-dropping works. For one, an employer feels a subconscious obligation to give you a solid chance if you have a mutual contact. In fact, they will probably have to find a good reason not to hire you if it might affect their social life or business. Also, human beings are ethnocentric creatures — which means they’re hesitant to let anyone into their world that they don’t know. This is one of the oldest cover letter tips ever used, but it still works. Establish a connection and they’re more likely to take a chance.
2. Never address “To Whom it May Concern.”
This is one of the cover letter tips you need to keep at the forefront of your mind. Even if they know you don’t know them, saying their name gets their attention, as if the letter is truly to them. It makes it more personal. Besides, if you don’t have the brains to research a name, they don’t want you. It shows you care about the position and are willing to do some homework. Otherwise you’re like that shameless spammer on Facebook who is always promoting his band that no one likes—“Be my friend! Be my friend!” No one likes that guy, so don’t act like him.
3. Keep it Conversational.
Keeping the cover letter conversational is one of the best cover letter tips out there. Show some personality and the reader is less likely to crumple it up and shoot a basket. This type of language makes people feel like you have rapport even if you’ve never met.
4. Brag about yourself.
While your dedication to telling the world how awesome you are hasn’t scored you many friends in the past, here is your chance to put it out there without everyone leaving the room talking about what a douche bag your are. Finally. Tell them why you’re the man or woman for the job. Having the confidence to state it straight up sends the signal that you really are qualified.
The more specific, tangible, and measurable the better because it tells them you’re not just winging it.
5. Always talk about your achievements.
They don’t just want another employee—they want the best, and achievements mark you as a high-value individual. Use bullet points to cover more space, creating the illusion there is more information than there actually is. Most cover letter tips will tell you not to list your accomplishments, but this is where you want to brag away.
6. Don’t just parrot your resume.
Your cover letter, though short and simple, is an asset that will pave the way for your future income, and a lot of prospective employees make the mistake of writing exactly what is on the resume. Don’t do this—it shows a lack of creativity. Your cover letter should expand and serve as a bridge to your resume. Since it’s the first thing they see, make it count. This goes back to the previous point- it’s one of the crucial cover letter tips. Brag and talk about how great you are but don’t just summarize your resume.
7. Don’t come across as a Harvard prude, even if you are one.
Professionalism is nice, but no one wants to work with a pompous ass. If that’s not how you talk on a daily basis, tone it down. If that is how you talk, you’ve got bigger problems than I can solve. Write like a kindergartner. Okay, I don’t mean write sentences like “Jane likes jobs. Jane wants money.” I mean be clear and simple, and sound out your words while you write to make sure they aren’t too sophisticated. And definitely don’t talk about how this is one of the awesome cover letter tips you found here. You don’t have to spill the beans like a kindergartener would either, just be clear, concise and readable.
8. Email letters should be short and sweet, like a one-night stand.
Long emails waste time that could be better spent on Facebook. Once they open your resume they’ve decided to invest some time in you, so they are psychologically prepared for more information. Einstein once said, “Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler.” Anything more will make you seem like a possible future headache.
9. Attack them from all angles.
If you don’t have submission guidelines, send the resume as an attachment and an email. Then point it out. “I’m such a great fella I sent this as an email AND an attachment.” The message is you are the type of person who will make their life easier.
10. The most crucial of the cover letter tips- Don’t be weak.
“My professional resume is included if you would like to look at it.” Subconsciously, you just told them you aren’t even sure if your resume is worth their time. Grow a pair. Say something direct and casual like, “As you can see in my resume, I’ve worked in the midget porn industry for forty-three years.” EXPECT them to read it, and they are much more likely to do so. Ok, so that actual line is not one of the cover letter tips you should utilize, but you get what I mean.